[LMB] OT: Clothing as code

baur baur baur at chello.at
Tue Jan 17 05:21:59 GMT 2017

>     Sylvia McIvers <sylviamcivers at gmail.com> hat am 16. Januar 2017 um 23:26
> geschrieben:
>     This is so non-trivial that many (most?) nations have at some time had
> laws
>     about it. The sumptuary laws very clearly stated what rank could wear what
>     level of finery, and the penalties for 'giving yourself airs' by dressing
>     'above your station'. (giving airs, how is that physically done?) I
>     remember one historical story (historical twice, since it was written ~150
>     years ago) about a whole family that was either imprisoned or thrown out
> of
>     a German county because the Countess was enraged that a (wealthy)
>     merchant's wife was wearing the same dress as her.
>     Remember that no one bothers passing a law unless people are actively
> doing
>     something that upsets the ruling class. Or something that someone will get
>     sued about: Do not iron garment while garment is being worn. Do not
>     attempt to remove debris from blades while lawn mower engine is still
>     running.

its one of the reasons why the Sir Ian McKellan "Richard III" that is transposed
into a 1930-ies like period works so well for my relatives

as an medieval reenactment player / SCA member i have no problems understanding
the social cues giving with the peoples titles and garb (but alas, many
theatrical productions get the garb wrong, when they try medieval costumes - so
they mix up these social cues), but this is sometimes hard for someone without
that background, so they loose a lot of information about the relative social
standing  of the characters

but transposing these cues into the 1930-ies made all these social cues suddenly
understandable to my relatives



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